The holiday marketing season is finally here, so it’s time to brush up on holiday email marketing techniques to improve open rates this year. From holiday specials to limited-time offers, emails are an excellent way to engage audiences and drive customers to your shop. If you’re tired of the same old tricks, maybe it’s time to give emojis a try.

Emojis in subject lines have a proven track record for high open rates and boosted engagements. In fact, 35% of email recipients look at the subject line to decide if they will open your message or not. From snowflakes to fire, there are many ways you can add an emoji to spice up your holiday email subject line. 

In this article, we’ll share the top 25 holiday subject lines with the highest open rates, as well as plenty of inspiration for writing your own email subject lines for your upcoming holiday email campaign. 

How to Create an Engaging Email Subject Line for the Holidays

The subject line is the first point of contact when your recipients see they have a new email from your brand. It sets the tone for the body of the message and tells the reader what to expect when they open the message. A good email subject line can make the difference between making a great first impression or not making an impression at all. Whether you are starting a business or you have been grinding it out for a long time, knowing how to craft an effective subject line is a crucial skill. 

Here’s how: 

Steps to Create Your Own Unique Subject Line This Holiday Season

  1. Start with a Goal. What’s the purpose of your email or email campaign? Your email subject line should reflect the outcome your customers can expect when they open your message. Beginning with a goal can help you hone your creativity to find the most effective subject lines. 
  2. Create a Call to Action. Determine which CTA to use to encourage customers to place an order. If you don’t know what a call to action is, it’s basically a line that tells your customers what you want them to do. For example, “Learn more today,” “Order now,” or “Tell us what you think.”
  3. Brainstorm a List of Subject Lines. You probably won’t crack a hit on the first try. Let the ideas flow, and a great subject line will take form. Keep track of your ideas by writing them down or typing them out. If you’re feeling stuck, re-read some of your subject line ideas and see if a new configuration comes to mind. 
  4. Collaborate with Other Team Members. Perhaps your colleagues have some creative subject lines in mind that can help you get your emails opened this holiday season. Be sure to ask for feedback to get an extra perspective on how your email subject lines flow. 
  5. Use A/B Testing. Subject lines are not one size fits all. Experiment with several different subject lines for your segmented email lists to find the perfect fit for your audience. You can even try the same subject lines with different emojis to see which emojis will be most effective. 

Follow these steps to come up with your own unique subject lines to hook your readers, increase open rates, and turn passive audiences into loyal customers. If you want to make an even bigger impact, use attractive words and emojis.

Popular Holiday Emojis to Add to Your Email Subject Lines

Looking for a better way to connect with email recipients in your holiday subject lines? Emojis are a great way to convey your tone and show off your brand’s personality. Plus, they can help you stand out in a crowded inbox and improve your open rates. If you’re not sure about using emojis, you can always conduct A/B testing on a subject line with and without an emoji. The results might surprise you.

Below are the most popular emojis to use in your email subject lines this holiday season: 

🎄

🎁

❄️

🎅

💰

See if adding one of these emojis to your custom holiday email subject line helps boost your open rates this year!

Tips for Writing Your Own Holiday Email Subject Lines with Emojis

Using emojis in your holiday email subject lines is a great way to make an impression and stand out from the wall of text consumers see when they scan the subject line of their email inbox. But too much of a good thing can have the opposite effect. 

Here are some handy tips to help you create effective holiday emails with subject lines and emojis:

  1. Give them the message upfront. Get recipients to open your email messages by telling them exactly what info they can find inside. Tricking them into opening an email will end up in an unsubscribe. Lead with authenticity, and your customers will repay you in kind. 
  2. Personalize everything. Consumers want personalized experiences. And different words will have various effects on people with different interests, backgrounds, and shopping habits. Segment your email lists so that your email subject lines are super relatable for specific audiences. 
  3. Keep an eye out for the competition. What emojis and subject lines are working for your competitors? Being aware of how other brands communicate can help you establish relationships with your audiences. But you don’t have to check on all your competitors manually. Look for an intelligent platform like Visualping that keeps tabs on the competition for you. 
  4. Excite them. Use words like “limited” or “ends today” to appeal to their fear of missing out. You can also try emotional language to catch your audience’s attention and get them excited about your holiday products. 
  5. Think quality, not quantity. An email subject line should be limited to a blurb — less than a full sentence, but more detail than a fragment. And don’t throw in too many emojis, or you run the risk of looking obnoxious and unprofessional. One is just fine. 

The Best Holiday Email Subject Lines with Emojis Included

Holiday emojis make a great addition to subject lines for businesses that want to increase their open rates. I mean, who doesn’t? Creating our own unique holiday email subject lines with emojis is a fun process that involves a little testing, a good understanding of your target audiences, and a few of these tips to make engaging email subject lines this season. 

Still, need some inspiration? Here are the best holiday email subject lines that include emojis:

Holiday Special 🎁 

Gold for the Holidays! 🎉

Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays from [your business/brand] 🎁

🎄 Merry Christmas, Big Thank You 🎄

🎁 You’ve Got a Present From [your business/brand] 

💌 A Letter From Santa’s Workshop

Exciting Last Minute Christmas Ideas & Offers! ⏰

Order Now for Christmas Delivery! 🎁 

🎁  Buy One, Give One 🎁 

👀 Have You Seen Our Newest Gift Guide? 

Holiday Sale Has Started Plus New Ideas for the New Year 🥳 

⏰ Want it by Christmas? Order Now! ⏰

🚚 Last Minute Delivery! 

✏️ Ten tips for [subject] this holiday season

❄️ It’s snowing sales! Take 10% off your next purchase ❄️

Pass the savings, please! 🍗

We’ve got sales to be thankful for this year 🦃

Winning gifts for all on your holiday list 🎁

🧧 Start [the year] on the right foot with 20% off

After the holidays end, the sales begin! 💰

🕎 We like you a latke, how about a discount?

Happy Holidays from [company name] ✨

💥 Holiday Special

🎅 HO HO NO!!! Last Day For 50% off!

Holiday Guide: Everything You Need to Know 🎄

Wrapping Up

Emojis can help your holiday promotional emails stand out among the competition. Follow these tips to use emojis in your subject lines the right way, and come back anytime you need inspiration for your next email campaign.

Author Bio

Lee Li is a project manager and B2B copywriter from ShenZhen, China, and is currently based out of Singapore. She has a decade of experience in the Chinese fintech startup space as a PM for TaoBao, MeitTuan, and DouYin (now TikTok).